Ireland Aims to Knock All Blacks Out of World Cup with Leinster's Star Signings

Leinster bolsters squad with high-profile signings like Jordie Barrett, aiming to dominate European rugby and reclaim titles. Coaching additions like Jacques Nienaber expected to give them an edge.

Trim Correspondents
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Ireland Aims to Knock All Blacks Out of World Cup with Leinster's Star Signings

Ireland Aims to Knock All Blacks Out of World Cup with Leinster's Star Signings

Leinster, the top team in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship, has made some high-profile signings to bolster their squad for the upcoming season. The signing of All Black utility back Jordie Barrett is particularly noteworthy, as it underlines Leinster's ambition to dominate European rugby over the next few seasons.

Barrett, who can play across the backline but has primarily played at fullback and inside center for the All Blacks, is joining Leinster's already formidable backline. During Ireland's tour of New Zealand in 2022, Barrett had a strong performance, showcasing his power, footwork, and kicking ability. He has since been primarily deployed at inside center for the All Blacks, and his display in the World Cup quarter-final defeat of Ireland last October was viewed as one of his best.

The addition of Barrett, along with the signing of double World Cup winner RG Snyman, is seen as a move to give Leinster's attack a more nuanced edge as they look to reclaim the URC title and the Investec Champions' Cup. Leinster already boasts a strong Irish national team contingent, with several players having over 100 caps.

The arrival of Jacques Nienaber as a coaching consultant is also expected to provide an edge to the team. Former Springboks star Victor Matfield describes Nienaber as 'the best defence coach in the world' and says his preparation and work-rate focus will help Leinster improve their defence and push them to a new level.

Why this matters: Leinster's dominance in the league this season and their formidable home record make them a daunting prospect for the rest of the championship. The signing of Jordie Barrett is seen as a homecoming for the Barrett family, who have strong connections with Ireland and Leinster. These high-profile signings could give Leinster the edge they need to knock the All Blacks out of the World Cup and cement their status as a powerhouse in European rugby.

Scrum-half Jamison Gibson-Park is excited to work and learn from Barrett, who he describes as an 'all-round player' with impressive physical attributes and skills. Leinster are focused on their upcoming Champions Cup semi-final against Northampton Saints, which will be played at Croke Park in Dublin. Gibson-Park is confident that Leinster's large fan base will show up in numbers to support the team in the pivotal match as they aim to secure a record-equalling fifth European Cup title this season.

Key Takeaways

  • Leinster signs All Black Jordie Barrett to bolster their backline for upcoming season.
  • Barrett's addition, along with RG Snyman, aims to give Leinster's attack more nuanced edge.
  • Arrival of Jacques Nienaber as coaching consultant expected to improve Leinster's defense.
  • Leinster focused on Champions Cup semi-final against Northampton Saints at Croke Park.
  • Leinster's signings and home record make them a daunting prospect in European rugby.